Projects and Podcasts

Trip Start Jun 13, 2013
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Flag of Senegal  , Kolda,
Thursday, October 18, 2012

So I know it has been a bit since I have posted last, and it's due to a mélange of things. I have not had a lot of "what should I do now" time at site, I have been traveling around country for both work and pleasure. Also, I have not found anything that I felt that happened that sparked a “you should write about that” inside of me. Now as pathetic as this post is sounding up until now I urge you to keep reading because somewhere along the line something always happens and it ends up a tad bit more interesting than I initially imagined.

I was in Dakar a couple of weeks ago to both celebrate with my training class, or stage, the end of our first five weeks at site and meet with the International School of Dakar. Alexx, one of my closest friends in my stage, just so happens to be a Eco-Tourism volunteer resulting in her being forced to live on a beach and people wanting to visit her and her site for both educational and leisure activities. Rough life. The school’s ninth grade science class has spent a week in January at her site, Palmarin, the last two years as an educational get away from the city. Alexx is in charge with planning their trip, including but not limited to meals, lodging, activities and transportation. Trevon and I will be assisting with the project this year and since we live too far away to be a real part of the planning, and Alexx can handle it on her own, we will serve as chaperones for the field trip. We are pretty excited and lucky that one of our best friends lives in a beautiful touristy area. Great pictures to follow.

Work at site has been going really well lately that I almost have an urge to want to expand too fast too soon. I am glad I realize that now versus later after potentially ruining the project. In short, our donkey cart needed some welding done on it since it’s getting a lot of wear. Problem fixed but my counterpart Amadou, being the go- getter that he is, wants to start searching for something bigger and more durable; this actually comes at a great time since we just expanded into the next neighborhood and now have more houses than before. It would only make sense to have a larger more stable mode of transporting the waste. Since jumping from small donkey cart to dump truck is a little unrealistic we are settling for a large donkey cart and another donkey. Now the only trick is to going to be finding funding to buy this new and improved cart and extra donkey. This is where international NGO’s with local offices come in handy. Once I get back from IST (In Service Training) Amadou and I are going to search for an organization where we would qualify for funding and I will attempt to woo them with my grant writing skills. Who would have thought taking a class in college called Grant Writing would come in handy?

My new obsession: podcasts. What are these you may ask? They are usually FREE audio episodes on iTunes of your favorite shows, be it on tv or radio. Some of the ones that I can’t stop downloading are The Current (Minneapolis radio station) Song of the Day, which is great because you get a free song each day of an artist they are showcasing. Ian and Margery on myTalk 107.1 and Lori and Julia on myTalk 107.1 who are talk show hosts of the morning show and the afternoon show for all your celebrity and gossip news. TEDTalks, which is a nonprofit dedicated to sharing conferences and lectures with an educational theme. And probably my new favorite Stuff You Should Know, which has shows that describe just about anything from How the Electoral College Works to How Beer Works. Now right now my obsession is more on the side of downloading these podcasts more than listening to them, but I am working on that. I like to listen to them while in some sort of public transportation since I entirely way too ADD to sit in a chair and listen to audio without doing something. I will keep you posted once I have actually figured out the Electoral College but until then I will leave you on a note from a podcast that I have listened to recently; Pizza was actually invented in Naples, Italy, it was originally a street food bought only by peasants because it was cheap, and NY’s Thin Crust Pizza has won repeatedly in blind experiments competing with Chicago Deep Dish Pizza. Ciao.

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